An Uncanny Amount of Knitting

Another post already! Lets be honest, this is happening people. I’ve been listening to knitting podcasts monogamously and that usually gets my knitting mojo up and running. Although now I am slightly depressed because all I want to do is knit, but it’s getting onto to busy season and I’ve got tons of stuff to do.


I’ve actually sewn a couple things. Yes, sue me, sewing. My mom got a new machine so I’ve ‘borrowed’ her old one to work on building some skills. While we were at Quilts at the Creek I bought a couple different fabrics and my mom and I made a bag. It’s a knitting project bag and really quite large, as I intended it to be! I used some of the scraps to make a smaller bag. I think I have enough for one more even. I’ll have to check when I have a spare second.


I’ve been steadily knitting along on my Galaxy Bone Yard. I went to a cottage weekend with friends this past weekend and brought it with me. When I am the ‘host’ of something like a cottage weekend and am sleeping in a strange place I don’t sleep well, so I was up at 6am both days. I just sat out by the lake and knit on this shawl. I think I might have accomplished a lot, but it’s really hard to tell. I’ve been used to knitting things that self-stripe where you can really see the progress. I’ve got over 800 yards of this yarn designated for this shawl and I intend to knit it all.


The Galaxy yarn is a darker colour as well, so it is a bit boring because of that as well. I really like how it is knitting up though. There are little pops of colour here and there.


I’ve also cast on another project. I had an unfortunate happening with the last sweater I made… it was really complicated, the size was off, etc. Whatever could have gone wrong with this thing, did. I was going to make the Rocky Coast Cardigan but thought it was a  bit complicated and the yarn wouldn’t lend itself well to this project. The yarn is a baby alpaca so I am looking for something that will not look bad once it grows a little bit. I found the Breezy Cardigan which is open and lovely so I am knitting up that. I am knitting it on size three needles so it might take a while. I am actually insane.


I did a lot of yarn dying this past weekend as well and got to experiment with a couple things. I’ll have to knit up those samples sometime in the near future. Considering I have five socks to knit up and only two hands… this is going to get interesting. I really really need that sock machine right now. I’ve been looking for one that is on sale, but I might just need to seek out someone who is simply willing to knit me some socks on the one they’re not willing to part with.

It’s getting to be that time of the year again and I will see everyone at our next show, the Kitchener/Waterloo knitter’s fair. It’s always a good time and I’m starting to dye stock for it now so we will have a full truck coming there. I think I picked an auspicious time to re-start blogging, but it will have to do!

KW Knitters' Fair 2016 vendor badge

On the Move

The weather has been getting colder and that more than anything really puts me in a mood for knitting! When the house is freezing and you need to go find socks to discourage your toes from turning blue. That is my favourite weather, right there! I love putting on layers and being able to wear the things I’ve knitted. It really sucks to knit something that you’re really proud of and not be able to wear it.

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I’ve had a few dyeing adventures in the past couple weeks. If you’re following my on instagram you will have seen the gradient I dyed!! I am going to start knitting it up to see how it turned out, right after I finish the Halloween socks I’ve been working on.

 

 

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I know! I am a terrible tease to post them in black and white, but they are going to be at the Vancouver show Knit City. I am planning on taking them to Creativ Festival and Woodstock Fleece and Fibre Festival as well so don’t worry if you aren’t going to make it all the way out to BC.

 

 

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That being said we are leaving for Vancouver in one week. It kind of snuck up on me. We’ve been planning this trip since March so it always seemed so far in the future. There were always other things to be concentrating on as well; writing magazine articles, blogging, preparing for the K/W show. All of the sudden we’re down to a single digit count down! I may or may not be panicking a little bit. I’ve got all the yarn in order, but no clothes or anything packed. I know you look at me like, ‘ummm, you still have a week.’ I am very Type A and have to start packing like NOW. Anytime I think of something I need to pack, I go and put it in the suitcase.

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I kid you not. I started making a list just now and it significantly brought down my anxiety levels. I’ve got lots of advice for places to eat and things to do! I think I may have to go again next year to actually do all of it! I’ve heard Vancouver is beautiful and I have the instinctual feeling I won’t want to leave. Really excited! Has anyone ever been? I am always looking for suggestions for places to eat!!
At Knit City we will be in booth 14, I always look forward to meeting new people so if you’re going to that show be sure to stop by and say hi!! I was looking over the floor plan and there are a lot of people there I have been dying to meet! I am going to have to escape from the booth at some point and wander around. I’ve been looking up some of the vendors I’ve never heard of and it’s looking like it is going to be GREAT!
Super excited, but I really need to go throw a couple things into a suitcase before I have a total breakdown!

Technical Tuesday: Keeping the Colour in the Yarn

We have all been there, you just finish knitting a project and throw it in the water to block it and the colour starts bleeding. This can mean many different things and there are several ways to keep the colour in your yarn!

You might be able to predict the first piece of advice I am going to give you… yup, that’s right. Make a swatch and wash it! This is especially important if you are doing something like colour work. If you are knitting with red and white yarn, you’re going to want to be 100% sure that red yarn is colour fast.

Ultra Purple Square 02252015

This is the best tutorial I’ve ever seen for fixing in colour that will fade. Whenever I am trying a new yarn, even sock yarn, I wash a swatch to see if it will fade, or bleed; then, if I need to, I can fix the dye in with citric acid and heat. As you can see, this works with finished objects or un-knit yarn alike. It’s one of the most versatile techniques I’ve come across.

Dye Pot

What to do if this is something that is just continually bleeding colour? Like when you buy new dark blue jeans. The colour comes off of those things forever! I’ve heard that washing them with vinegar helps but it seems to me that is just an excess of dye used to get that dark colour and the indigo keeps coming off. If this is the case, I suggest repeatedly washing your garment. I had a commercially dyed yarn that was a burgundy colour, which bled quite a bit when I blocked it and any subsequent washes. After the third wash the colour stopped coming out of the sweater, but the colour never faded, it just released a bit of the extra dye.

Dye Explosion 1

Fading and bleeding are usually the only two problems I have with yarn and colour-fastness. They’re generally either solved with repeated washing or a citric acid soak. The yarns most at risk for this kind of thing are dark and really saturated colour. If they’re not done carefully or correctly there could be issues.

Up and Coming

I still can’t believe it is September already. It’s going to be sweater season soon and you can bet your bum I’m preparing for that. I really can’t wait for the fall season. Especially since this Labour Day weekend was SO HOT! I couldn’t believe it! I was obligated to be outside a couple days over the long weekend and it was brutal! Almost 40 degrees!

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Even though it has been very hot outside I’ve been working with warm things non-stop. That is right, the Kitchener/Waterloo Knitters Fair is this weekend so I am attempting to get everything ready. I haven’t really been on my game lately so I wasn’t prepared weeks in advance, like I had hoped to be. Let’s be honest though, do those plans ever really work out?

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The biggest thing I have been trying to get together is the dyeing. I dyed some of the self-striping Psychedelic Onyx. I will be carrying it there, but in limited quantities. I am also going to be dyeing the Warped Porch and A Study in Blue… and Black for the show, but again… there aren’t going to be a vast amount.

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Just a quick update today because we’re obviously super busy in the dye labs. Making sure everything is ready and getting all the details of life in line with details of craft shows! Please stop by and say hi if you’re heading over to the Kitchener/Waterloo Knitters Fair, we’re going to be in booth 59 this year. Same physical place as last year, just a different booth number!

Where did the Summer Go?!

I can’t believe it is September already and we are in the last weeks of summer, but at the same time… KNITTING SEASON IS UPON US! Knit fast and die warm! I was just reminded of this saying the other day when I saw a tote bag with a skull and cross bones and this quote. It was really fantastic.

What Happend to the Summer-3607

What have I been up to in knitting? Lots and lots of things apparently. I have cast on a few new socks, but this one I haven’t started knitting yet; there is something of a story to it. I saw this colour-way at Nerd Girl Yarns in Vogue Knitting Live Chicago 2013. There are ALL sorts of really fantastic colours corresponding to my favourite fandoms, but when we were in Chicago Paul and I really liked watching the show Supernatual. We had eventually grown apart from this TV show, as we tend to binge watch things once the season has ended. Preferably when the next season has started… I have this problem with patience. The colour-way ‘Gank Demons’ was A) an awesome quote from the show and B) in my favourite colours. I had it squirrelled away in my stash for a long time and came across it unexpectedly.

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I actually have two stashes, one is upstairs and classified as a ‘perhaps someday I will knit this’ and the other is much smaller and stays on the main floor next to the couch. This is a more immediate stash for things that have projects waiting and just need to be started. It IS a stash of it’s own because it is much larger than a small box next to the couch; trust me, it’s a small shelving unit from Ikea. I had moved all my random sock yarn into the ‘immediate stash’ area and randomly decided to cast this one on the other day. I ended up balling it and casting on, but no knitting. Come think of it, I might take it out and ball it into two separate balls for the sake of matching socks.

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If you receive the Stitch Please Newsletter, you will have seen the newest self-striping colour-way! I am calling it ‘A Study in Blue… and Black’. This colour-way always reminded me of the scarf Sherlock wears in the BBC TV version of Sherlock. The scarf it self isn’t striped, but it is blue… actually come think of it, these socks look nothing like that scarf. No idea why it makes me think of Sherlock, but I do love the books AND the TV show. I should really start doing more fandom colours, I always like to knit fandom colours with a fandom pattern while watching said show. It really instils the geekieness.

What Happend to the Summer-3830Yes that would be preparations for the Kitchener/Waterloo Knitters Fair!

That is all I’ve got for you today! I am going to need to start another bigger project, I am getting way too many socks on the needles at present. I am hoping to do a few rows on my grandmother’s sweater as well, but with show season coming up… who knows?! I would also encourage anyone on twitter to randomly tweet me to guilt me into working on my grandmother’s sweater. I think I just need a good kick in the butt to get moving on it!

Epidemiology of Socks

If anyone is following me on Instagram or subscribed to the newsletter, you might have noticed that I finished my rainbow socks! When I was at the Creativ Festival, the finished sock was out on display and I was knitting the rest of the second sock. I had been planning on posting them eventually, but everyone loved them so much I am going to share early.

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I’m going to be posting 5 skeins of this self-striping sock yarn in our Sapphire base. The listing will go up on our Etsy store May 16th at 11am. I am going to release a different colour of the self-striping variety next month. I am not ruling out future skeins of the rainbow self-striping, but I have no solid plans to repeat it in the immediate future. I’ve been playing around with a lot of colours and combinations with self-striping yarn and it is a fantastic amount of fun! Keeping me vastly entertained!

05062014 Socks Three

I’ve also been working on Paul’s socks. When we went to see the new Avenger’s movie, I brought them and worked on them diligently for a good two hours. After I got out of the theatre, I noticed that the colours were pooling very differently! A few people call these socks cousins instead of twins, but the colours were really different. They had to be more like 2nd or 3rd cousins on your step-father’s side.
I looked at my Ravelry notes and realized I had not only used the bigger needle size, but had increased the number of stitches as well. I usually use 64 but in this case I used 72. I had completely forgotten about this and was happily knitting along at 64 stitches. I immediately ripped out the 3-4 inches of sock I had finished in the movie and set it up so I could pick up and go when I was ready. With so little knitting time, it breaks my heart a little bit to frog so much work.

05062015 socks Paul

To be completely honest there were an uncommon amount of mistakes in the ribbing, but I just kept repeating the mantra ‘I REGRET NOTHING’ whenever I knew I had messed up the ribbing.
I am still thinking about what projects I want to knit as samples for the next show. I am looking for some really good one or two skein projects. I think I’ve knit a great many socks, not that anyone could tell by the blog content, so I need something different; a pallet cleanser of sorts. Usually the best patterns are the ones you hear through word of mouth, so if anyone has anything they really liked, please comment or send me an email through the link in the side bar!